Vascular disease and aging


The authors of a new study entitled, "Alterations in Gene Expression During Progressive Aging in Rat Thoracic Aorta," are Steven J. Miller and Joseph L. Unthank, Methodist Research Institute, Clarian Health, Indianapolis, IN and William C. Watson and Kimberly A. Kerr, Department of Surgery, Indiana University School, of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN. They will present their findings during the upcoming scientific conference, Understanding Renal and Cardiovascular Function Through Physiological Genomics, a meeting of the American Physiological Society (APS) (www.the-aps.org), being held October 1-4, 2003 at the Radisson Riverfront Hotel and Convention Center, Augusta, GA.


In their earlier work, the researchers used oligonucleotide microarray analysis to investigate progressive age-mediated changes in gene expressions to demonstrate that vascular remodeling occurs in rat aorta with progressive aging. In the current study, thoracic aorta was harvested from 3-, 6-, 15-, and 28-month old F344xBNrats and total RNA was isolated. Microarray analysis was conducted using a standard protocol. Four biologic replicates were used for each age.


The researchers found:

  • that the total number of genes with significant (p<0.01) changes in expression increased with progressive aging compared to 3-month old rats (11, 21, and 277 genes at 6, 15, and 28 months, respectively);
  • inflammatory-associated adhesion molecules ICAM-1 and VCAM-1 had significantly (p< 0.01) increased expression at 28 vs. 6 months (2.1x and 3.7x, respectively), as well as 28 vs. 15 months (1.6x and 2.0, respectively);
  • ICAM-1/VCAM-1 expression also increased at 15 vs. 6 months, but was not statistically significant; and
  • other functional groups of genes that were significantly altered with age at 28 vs. 6 months included increased

Contact: Donna Krupa
American Physiological Society

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